Friday, October 23, 2009

ObamaCare Fails First Hurdle

You wouldn’t know from the approved Obama Media, but Government takeover of Health-Care is going down in flames.

From yesterday’s New York Times, p. 25:

"You have to read all the way to page A-25 in today’s New York Times to learn about it, but the Senate took its first floor vote on Obamacare yesterday and the White House lost. Big. The NYT reports: “Democrats lost a big test vote on health care legislation on Wednesday as the Senate blocked action on a bill to increase Medicare payments to doctors at a cost of $247 billion over 10 years. The Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, Democrat of Nevada, needed 60 votes to proceed. He won only 47. And he could not blame Republicans. A dozen Democrats and one independent crossed party lines and voted with Republicans on the 53 to 47 roll call.”

As we reported on Monday and Tuesday, yesterday’s “doc fix” (a $247 billion “payout” to doctors) vote was part of a White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel strategy to smooth passage of President Barack Obama’s $1 trillion-plus health care overhaul by transferring a quarter of its cost into a separate, and completely unpaid for, bill. This transparently dishonest shell game was too much for honest Democratic Senators like Evan Bayh (D-IN), Kent Conrad (D-ND), Russ Feingold (D-WI), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Bill Nelson (D-FL), and Ron Wyden (D-OR). Wyden told the NYT: “On the eve of a historic debate on health care, it’s essential to show a commitment to real reform,” which includes fiscal responsibility.

Yesterday’s vote marks a significant failure of the Left’s special interest approach to passing Obamacare. From the beginning, the White House thought that if it bought off all of the business interests involved (the American Medical Association, the drug industry, health insurers, hospitals, etc.) opposition to the plan would whither. In one sense, the plan worked. USA Today reports PhRMA, Pfizer, America’s Health Insurance Plans, and the Federation of American Hospitals have all ponied up millions of dollars for lobbying and television ads in support of Obamacare.

But all these special interest television ads failed to rid Americans of their common sense objections to Obamacare’s government takeover of health care. Gallup reports today that Americans now more than ever believe the costs their family pays for health care will get worse if Obamacare passes. And more Americans now believe that Obamacare will lower the quality of care they receive, reduce their health care coverage, and complicate the insurance company requirements they have to meet to get certain treatments covered.

Instead of the massive overhaul being pursued by the White House, a solid majority of Americans tell Gallup they want to see Congress move in the opposite direction. By 58% to 38%, Americans would generally prefer to see Congress deal with health care reform “on a gradual basis over several years” rather than “try to pass a comprehensive health care reform plan this year.” Bipartisan, fiscally responsible, reform such as equalizing the tax treatment of health insurance purchases, freeing customers to purchase health insurance across state lines, and allowing states more flexibility on Medicaid spending are readily doable. And that is what the people want.

At the end of the day, all Republican’s and 13 Democrats led by Senator Bobby Byrd (D. W. VA) voted against cloture which would’ve ended debate on the Senate floor and forced a vote. 

Byrd was also the first Senator (of either party) to question the Constitutionality of Obama’s “Czars.”  As Obama looks to consolidate power in the White House, the Senate’s most senior member, and fellow Democrat Byrd stands in Obama’s way of elevating executive power above the Senate Chamber.  In short, Byrd is protecting the Senate’s power against the White House and this is as it should be.

If Obama thinks he can get in a pissing match with Byrd and win, he’s got another thing coming.  Constitutionally speaking, Bobby Byrd will kick Obama’s ass up and down Pennsylvania avenue.


The Doctors Are Out …

66% Oppose “ObamaCare”

A recent IBD/TIPP Poll showed two-thirds of physicians opposing Congress' proposed reforms, and warning of dire consequences. Now, a forum of prominent doctors has amplified those concerns.

Of 1,376 doctors responding in late August, 65% opposed Congress' reform plans; 45% said enactment would make them consider leaving their practice or take early retirement; and 67% expected fewer students to apply to medical schools.

Some 65% also felt seniors would end up with lower-quality care under a government plan; 71% didn't think it possible for the government to cover 47 million more people and cut costs while also delivering better quality care; finally, 60% of physicians didn't think that under a government plan, drug companies would have incentives to continue developing as many lifesaving new medicines.

America's doctors know their patients better than politicians do. And the hostility seen in these poll results was mirrored by virtually all of the 15 esteemed physicians from the New York metropolitan area gathered by former New York state Lt. Gov. Betsy McCaughey for a Forum on Medical Excellence Monday evening.

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was vilified by Washington politicians for coining the term "death panels" to describe the government bureaucracies that would intrude in life-and-death decisions regarding the allocation of resources under the proposed government takeover of our health system.

(Excerpted, read the rest at Investors Business Daily)

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